Friday, March 17, 2017

What I've Been Watching, ii

Ordinarily I have a hard time watching anything by myself; every time I start a show I see a few episodes, get tired of watching it on my own, and open a book instead. However, this month I've managed to watch a few things with my parents and friends and feel like I'm up to date on television culture (jokes - that will never happen). I stayed almost completely away from Netflix and explored my vastly underutilised Amazon Prime account.

This Channel 4 comedy follows an Irish schoolteacher and an American tourist as they attempt to build a life together after their week-long-stand results in pregnancy. It's unexpectedly honest, hilarious, smart, and engaging, and their conversations feel like real-to-life interactions. I watched the first two seasons in a matter of days and am impatiently waiting for the third to be released on Amazon later this spring.

Amazon made big waves with its streaming content when The Man in the High Castle first released but I'd never watched it until recently. TMITHC is an alternate version of history that looks at how the world would be different if the Nazis had won WWII. None of the characters fit into "good" or "bad" categories, which makes for particularly intriguing motives. I've been watching this one with my parents so we've only made it to episode eight, but so far I'm really enjoying it.

I've seen all of Marvel's movies many times, but it'd been a long time since I'd seen Iron Man and I rewatched it whilst recently at the beach with friends. I'd forgotten just how nice it is to watch a Marvel film that doesn't have five other movies connected to the central plot; as the first of the "Marvel universe" films, Iron Man stands completely on its own. My only renewed complaint is that Pepper Potts is the real hero of the story; every time something difficult and plot-altering must happen, Pepper is the one that actually does it yet her role is completely overlooked.

I mentioned my love of this series in my February roundup, but I'm reiterating it in greater detail this time. Brooklyn 99 is a police sitcom that follows a team of detectives as they solve crimes in Brooklyn. I'd burnt myself out on cop shows in the past, so Brooklyn 99 is a refreshingly different take on the genre, with a comedic focus that addresses character interactions more than solving crimes. The cast is hilarious (Chelsea Peretti has me laughing every single episode) and the relationships between them are heartwarming, making for a perfect feel-good, binge-worthy show.

My parents and I stumbled upon the sci-fi comedy film quite by accident. Absolutely Anything is directed by Terry Jones and stars all the Monty Python members as aliens who are determined to destroy Earth, but before doing so must give humanity a chance to prove itself by giving one randomly selected man - played by Simon Pegg - ultimate power for a week. Pegg's character has no idea what's going on, and hilarity ensues as he interacts with his crush downstairs (Kate Beckinsdale) and his dog (voiced by Robin Williams). It feels very, very British and can go a little over the top with its humour at times, but in spite of the negative reviews, we liked it.

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